Since winning $9,500 at the Palm Beach Philanthropy Tank in March, things have only gotten more exciting for Equal and Empowered! We started off the week at a successful meeting with our mentor, Julie Cummings, where we discussed our upcoming plan, and what it will entail.
Since feminism is a movement, and not a tangible object, we brainstormed about ways to link both important aspects. It had to be something that would give voice to young people throughout the community, and advance our ideals of feminism and empowerment. In the end, we decided on a book featuring the poetry, artwork, and short stories from students in Palm Beach county and beyond. Every individual has a unique voice and story, and what better way to showcase that than via a tangible book? Members have already started writing and acquiring submissions, and we’re so excited bring our book to life!
It seems the local media is taking notice of the impact we have had thus far! The Sun Sentinel featured news of our success at the Philanthropy Tank, and the Palm Beach Post followed suit, with a print edition coming out tomorrow!
As we continue to move forward on this incredible journey, we cannot wait to achieve even more to further the ideals of feminism, and make this world a better place for everyone!
The evening of March 17 is one that will not be forgotten, especially not for the members of Equal and Empowered! Thanks to months of preparation, and the invaluable insight dispelled by our mentor Margaret May Damen, Equal and Empowered walked away with a total of $9,500 and a mentor for a year! Julie Fisher Cummings contributed $7,500, and we are honored to have her expertise and enthusiasm guiding us for the next 365 days. Additionally, Danielle Moore generously contributed $1,000, and Equal and Empowered received $1,500 for being selected as second place audience favorites!
Such success is truly a dream come true for Equal and Empowered! Thanks to funding, we now have the ability to complete many tasks we had previously just been able to imagine. One such example is creating a book in the form of a collection of poems, each one detailing various aspects and struggles associated with feminism. With it, we hope to inspire young people to embrace who they are and understand they are not alone in their struggles.
In other news, our prom dress drive is still going on, and will be so until April 16. If you have or know someone who has a prom dress they would like to donate, please give it to one of the members of Equal and Empowered.
We are so humbled to have received such an incredible award from the Philanthropy Tank! Seeing such passionate young people come together to better our community was such an inspiring experience. The future holds many wonderful plans for Equal and Empowered, and we cannot wait to make an impact beyond the Grandview community.
As we said in our last blog post, currently we are working on our presentation for Philanthropy Tank! Since we last posted, we have attended a meeting with our mentor, the estimable Margaret May Damen, and attended a public speaking workshop. These have allowed us bond as a group and streamline our plans and ideas.
Over the next couple of weeks, there are a lot of exciting things happening with E + E. On Tuesday, March 1st, we begin Grandview’s first annual prom dress drive! We are working together with Becca’s Prom Dress Drive to donate prom dresses to underprivileged high school students who can’t afford them but still deserve to have a night with their friends. If you have any old formal dresses or prom dresses that you would be willing to donate, your contribution would be very much appreciated.
On March 17th, we have our presentation for Philanthropy Tank! At 5:00 P.M. at the Harriet Himmel Theater in CityPlace, we will be presenting for the chance to win up to 15,000 dollars. It would be awesome if you could come down and show us your support.
As I’m sure you’re all aware, Grandview’s Family Fun Day is this Saturday, January 30th. We hope to see you there, because Equal + Empowered ™ will have a booth. We will have a game to raise money, and we will also be continuing our lollipop fundraiser and accepting donations. All proceeds raised will go to the continual funding of our organization, as well as to women’s shelters. At our booth, we will also be providing information about the importance of intersectional feminism and how you can help in the fight for equality.
In addition to Family Fun Day, our next big event is for the Philanthropy Tank! After filling out the application, we were selected as one of the finalists. We will be participating in a workshop and being assigned a mentor, and then, on March 17th, we will give our final presentation at CityPlace. We have the chance to win up to 15,000 dollars, and we are very excited to begin preparations.
It didn’t take the six of us very long to figure out what our Passion Project would be this year. We are certainly all different, and therefore bring unique interests and passions to the table. Although some may see this as a disadvantage, we took our varying skill sets and put them together to achieve a common goal: creating a club in which equality for all is prioritized, with an emphasis this semester on women. We are all strong young women who have a passion for equality, something that unfortunately tends to be grossly understated in this day and age.
After some debate about whether or not we wished to be affiliated with the United Nation’s club for women, we opted to form an independent organization. This will give us more flexibility in many areas, especially in terms of events and fundraisers we wish to hold. Instead of becoming a chapter of a larger organization, we strive to eventually transform into that larger organization, gaining members and raising awareness throughout our community.
Perhaps one of the most challenging aspects of forming our organization was thinking of a name. We wanted something that would capture in a nutshell the main reason for creating it. Each of us put forth suggestions, and in the end we settled on Equal and Empowered (E+E). This name conveys our belief that this organization is about equality, not supremacy.
Now that our initial planning stage is finished, the members of E+E look forward to soon becoming active in the community and starting on the path to making a difference in the world around us.
There are busy times ahead for Equal and Empowered!
We have just begun our first fundraiser, entitled Inequality Sucks, where we will be selling lollipops from anywhere from $0.50 to $1.00 – or, if you’re extremely lucky, you might get one for free! All profits from this fundraiser go directly towards our group and the fight for equality, so all purchases are appreciated.
We will also be hosting our very first convocation in December! We will be introducing ourselves and what we hope to accomplish, as well as talking about why it is important and why we are passionate about the fight for equality. There will also be an identity-based activity, because we know that often in high school it is hard to know who you are, and it is even harder to learn about yourself in a society where anything outside an arbitrary norm is treated as lesser.
We hope that by teaching about identity and self-love and acceptance, we will able to encourage students to support each other on their journeys to self-discovery, as well as become more secure with themselves.
This past month, E&E has been working on a plan of action. There are many ways that we could go about fundraising, but we have settled on our first event as one to raise awareness about identity. As a society, we are constantly told who we are and who we have to be, and that is a big part of what contributes to inequality. We are told what to become based on how we are born, and that wastes so much potential and so many possibilities.
Obviously, this is not something that we will be able to fix easily. It is a problem that pervades our society and every waking moment, and will therefore take years, if not generations, to eliminate. However, we can help right here in the Grandview Community. Our Identity Convocation will allow students to decide which parts of themselves they feel are the most important, and create a pie chart that is uniquely representative of them. This will allow students to take some small measure of control of who they see themselves as, and, hopefully, spread that feeling to others.
Identity Pie Chart Example